Nigeria’s entrepreneurs, intrapreneurs need 21st skills to drive growth, experts say  

Experts in the educational sector have called on entrepreneurs and intrapreneurs to equip themselves with the 21st century skills to foster economic growth and development in the country.

The Experts who spoke at the Hot Topics Africa Forum 2.0 organised by Access Bank in partnership with Sussex University urged entrepreneurs to create a workplace that embraces learning culture and diversity as technology continues to disrupt business models and future work experiences.

“The world is transforming. Innovation and artificial intelligence (AI) are changing the work place. How are we going to scale up to meet that change and transfer skills? Individuals need to gain new skills to be prepared for the changes to drive economic growth,” Richard Follett, deputy pro vice-chancellor, internal, and professor of History, University of Sussex, said.

“Research has shown that the most successful intrapreneurs and innovation-led organisations have supportive cultures and structures, and are connected with external partners in extensive innovation ecosystems, including universities, research institutions, and other companies.”

Follett urged youths in Nigeria to leverage opportunities that would equip them with the 21st century skills that businesses’ needs.

“It is tough being an average unemployed Nigerian, but you have to understand that taking yourself out of that situation is your own responsibility and not the government’s or society’s,” he advised.

An intrapreneur is a person who takes on the responsibility to create new ideas, products and processes or invention within an organisation.

Also speaking, Deola Adejuyigbe, executive director, Serve Consulting said, the population is changing the environment is changing.

“The world is changing the things we appreciate. Things we pay for are also changing. Therefore, it is imperative for businesses and employees to innovate for today’s realities.”

He noted that businesses are becoming increasingly short-lived owing to their inability to innovate, saying that accelerating technological changes for businesses is critical for their survival.

Omobolanle Victor-Laniyan, head of sustainability, Access Bank Plc, called on youths to seek to become entrepreneurs to create jobs and foster economic growth and development.

Victor-Laniyan stated that Access Bank is ready to support youths with excellent business ideas, while urging that to provide solutions to societal challenges.

“Young people must take action, but knowing the right steps to take at every point is key. You must take the first steps in the right direction and ensure that you are consistent with those steps and actions,” she said.

 

Josephine Okojie

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